NOW ON is Petula's forty-fifth studio album released in the UK on 16
September 2016 by BMG. FROM NOW ON debuted at #70 on the official
UK album chart and marks Petula's fiftieth year on the UK album charts
with her first chart album being I COULDN'T LIVE WITHOUT YOUR LOVE
released in 1966. Along with the standard album on CD, fans can also purchase the release as
a vinyl LP - the first studio album to be issued by Petula on vinyl since 1988!
NOW ON features eleven tracks, seven of which feature Clark as a
writer / co-writer. On making the album, in an interview Clark
reflected: "On the new album I am much more involved than I was on LOST
IN YOU - I play piano on a lot of it, co-wrote songs and did the
backing vocals. I'm learning all the time, and it never stops. And to do
new songs - it's like having love affairs. They're always my favorites
because they're sort of slightly unknown. And to do things in the same
way... I love singing the old songs, but I've done that. Newness is
important to me. Moving on is important to me".
NOW ON comes from the writing / production team behind Petula's 2013
UK chart album LOST IN YOU which emerged to widespread critical
acclaim. THE GUARDIAN described LOST IN YOU as "sleek
and surprising" and drew comparisons with Lana Del Rey, while THE
TELEGRAPH stated: "The really astonishing thing is that it
sounds utterly contemporary... it could pass for the debut of some hip
young singer-songwriter a quarter her age".
NOW ON was produced by John Owen Williams, an established record
producer and songwriter who operates from his studio in West London 'The
John Williams and Petula at the opening
night of Bombay Dreams in 2002
first collaborated with Williams in 2002 when he co-ordinated the release of
Petula's chart compilation album THE ULTIMATE COLLECTION for
Sanctuary and produced the tracks MEMORIES OF LOVE, LA VIE EN ROSE and ALL THROUGH THE YEARS.
teamed up again with John in 2011 when he co-wrote the single CUT
COPY ME (voted in the Top 10 Best Songs of 2013 by Time Magazine and
featured on the Radio 2 playlist), which was initially released on the
French album PETULA in 2012 and on LOST IN YOU in 2013.
COPY ME is significant in that it was the first song Petula recorded
at Williams' studio, The Hut, which Petula refers to as the Wendy
on FROM NOW ON commenced in September 2015 at John's studio The
Hut. Commenting on the studio, Petula reflects: "John's garden is a
beautiful, real English garden with a building that looks like a Wendy
house - a studio with windows looking out at the trees and flowers is
unusual, and for me at least it was a joy to hang out there and sing
when the mood struck! It was so great being back in the Wendy house - a bijou recording studio tucked away in West London. The vibe is very
special here - and the garden was in full bloom too".
of the release was first announced in February 2016.
MY HEART became the lead song from the album, co-written by Petula
Clark, Sarah Naghshineh, Paul Visser and John Owen Williams and became an
upfront single released ahead of the album on 05 August 2016 on digital
platforms. Promotional copies were also manufactured by BMG and
allocated to radio
stations. The song was selected by the Radio 2 Playlist team and was
featured in the C-list for four consecutive weeks.
To accompany the
release, Petula issued a music video directed by Jack A Bowden and
produced by Kode Media whose high profile featured works include music
videos for Mark Ronson, Will Young, Norah Jones and Sam Smith.
Bowden directed Petula in an appropriately elegant yet characterful
setting, using some old-school techniques to showcase the track and her
performance. Commenting Jack A Bowden reflected: "We wanted to show
Petula in an angelic, ethereal light, while placing her in an
environment which contrasts with this kind of quality. The house
in-which she's placed is decrepit and weathered, but proudly holds hints
of grandeur and class, having aged gracefully. Petula performs an
emotive message to a past companion, whom, for whatever reason is
no-longer part of her world. Using techniques, such as 'fake cuts', and
old school methods, like slow shutter speeds, we presented Petula in a
haunting fashion. This was designed to pose a question as to whether
Petula had left her lovers realm, or vice versa".
September 2016, Petula performed a segment of SACRIFICE MY HEART
on the National Lottery show for BBC 1 (below).
became the second focus track from the album and was issued on
digital platforms. BLACKBIRD was also issued as a instant
grat track on YOUTUBE
in September 2016. Of BLACKBIRD; Petula commented, "When
I'm in London I stay at what one might call a bijou apartment in
Chelsea. It's on a very quiet street with trees and greenery. I have a
small balcony and I usually leave the door open so that I can hear the
birdsong. My favourite by far is the Blackbird who seemingly sings just
for me. I recorded this song in his honour. Apparently Paul (referring
to McCartney) wrote it as a civil rights song, and that is another
reason to record it".
is a magical lullaby, a stripped back acoustic gem with no frills, bells
or whistles. Its hypnotic guitar captivates whilst Petula Clark's
authentic vocals reflect the very essence of the song" Vents
/ Recording Notes:
Sacrifice My Heart (Clark / Naghshineh / Visser /Williams)
03:2 7 The
backing vocals on this track are by Petula.
This track was
issued as an upfront track ahead of
the album release. The track appeared on the Radio 2 Playlist (C list)
for four consecutive weeks and a specially commissioned video was issued
to support the release. Petula also performed the song live on TV on the
BBC's National Lottery programme on 24 September 2016.
Blackbird (Lennon / McCartney) 02:21
Originally an idea for the Lost In
You Sessions but never completed. Issued as the second focus track
from the album in September 2016 as a grat track via Youtube.
Endgame (Clark / Williams) 03:10
First mooted for the Lost In You
sessions. Endgame is the elder sibling of all the new songs.
Fever (Cooley / Davenport) 02:48
The second cover on the album. Petula was nervous about tackling Peggy Lee's Fever - they met years ago, and even sang together - but here the song gains an interesting, and sly, rocky edge.
From Now On (Clark / Degiorgio / Visser / Williams) 04:04
While You See A Chance (Winwood / Jennings) 02:54
The third cover on the album is the
Steve Winwood 1980 hit While You See A Chance
which gains a choir, created quite by accident by Petula, John Williams and Paul Visser
"I love how that happened: organically, naturally. It's how the music should be - from the heart, and straight
out" - Petula.
A Miracle To Me (Clark) 02:38
Another of her own compositions, written in the French mountains, embellished later by her writing on her piano - on the track Petula
is credited as playing harp and piano.
This track had its first UK airplay on the 28 August 2016 by Elaine
Paige on her Sunday Show tunes programme for BBC Radio 2. Elaine
referred to the recording as "Lullaby Like".
Pour Etre Aimee De Toi (Clark / Aznavour) 02:57
album track recorded during the sessions for the French album Petula
issued in 2012 by Sony BMG and co-written with Charles Aznavour - here
the song gets an overhaul in a stripped back version with Petula at
Radio 2 presenter Graham Norton cites this as his favourite track on the album. Petula sang the song live accompanying herself on the BBC
Radio Four programme Loose Ends broadcast on 24 September 2016.
Never Let Go (Clark / Large / Visser / Williams) 03:04
Happiness (Clark) 01:53
Happiness is a song recorded for the
Lost In You album sessions recorded in London. Happiness was first
performed in concert in 2011 in Paris and then performed as the opening
song in Petula's concert tours of Australia (2012) and the UK tour
(2013) with the French language verse replaced by a new English language
verse written especially for her concert opening. Although recorded for
the UK chart album Lost In You, Happiness was kept back for a proposed
deluxe edition of the album which never materialised. The song was later
included on the Japanese release of the album as a bonus track. It is
presented here for the first time for the UK market. The French lyric is
by Alain Boublil.
At the premiere of The Beatles: Eight Days A Week - The
compiled and created by Steven Warner & Tim Hutton
Selected graphics by Ray Leaning @ Muse
Fine Art & Design
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from the Petula Clark Archive - Warner / Hutton Collection. Multimedia
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